RSS Feed

Tag Archives: Buxton

Shipwreck Grill | Buxton, NC


Shipwreck Grill (Facebook)
46618 NC Highway 12 (map it!)
Buxton, NC 27920
(252) 995-5548
Open Sun-Thurs, 7a-3p; Fri & Sat, 7a-9p
Accepts cash & debit/credit
Vegetarian/vegan/gluten free? Y/N/N
Kid-friendly? Y

Visited: Wednesday, June 25, 2014 at 9:00 a.m.


One morning on our Outer Banks trip, Mrs. Breakfast w/Nick and I headed out for breakfast together. After stopping at the Gingerbread House Bakery for a quick celebration (it’s the site of the first BwN review), we traveled back up north to Buxton for a full breakfast at the newer Shipwreck Grill. Shipwreck Grill is ideally positioned right at the bend of Highway 12 on the Outer Banks, where the island takes a 90 degree turn to the west, thus creating The Point, an interesting spot where both southern and eastern waves collide. Shipwreck’s location was previously occupied by the Island Perks Diner, and it’s easily visible to catch passing islanders.


Like many buildings on the OBX, it features a weathered wooden siding.


The interior is split into several different rooms. Counter service is offered in the entry room. Shipwreck provides coffee, tea, snacks, and to-go meals, a must for busy visitors traveling up and down the Banks.


In a side room to the right is a small bar with stools.


To the left is their enclosed patio, a popular commodity on OBX restaurants.


The breakfast menu is full of seafaring terms: The Landlubber, the Torpedo Burrito, you get the picture. It leans more toward the meat-eaters side of things, although it’s adaptable.


We started with an iced chai, which was a little heavy on the ice.


I’m a sucker for a benedict, especially when there’s seafood involved, so I went straight to the crabcake benedict. Unfortunately, this is how it looked when it first arrived, with ham instead of crabcakes. Our server was apologetic and hurried some crabcakes over to us, although judging by the tables around us, that wasn’t the only mistaken ingredient.


Overall, it was a fine example of a benedict, although not stellar. The poached eggs were overdone, so no runny yolks, and the hollandaise leaned more to the foamy and buttery side that I preferred.


We also gave the shrimp and grits a try. The grits needed more butter or cheese (or both), but the shrimp were cooked and seasoned properly, and it comes in a fairly generous portion.

I think Shipwreck Grill is another worthy addition to the island’s breakfast scene, even if it’s not completely mind-blowing. Some seafood dishes and the big screened in porch make it a handy stop if you’re exploring the OBX.

Shipwreck Grill on Urbanspoon

Island Perks Diner | Buxton, NC

NOTE: Island Perks Diner is now CLOSED.

Island Perks Diner
46618 Highway 12 (map it!)
Buxton, NC 27595
(252) 986-1111
Open daily 6:30 a.m. – 9 pm (bfast served till 11:30 a.m.)
Accepts cash and credit cards

Date of Visit: Wednesday, June 16, 2010 at 9:00 a.m.

IMPRESSIONS: For all of you vacationers on the Outer Banks who fretted over the lack of a breakfast diner (okay, maybe it was just me), you can fret no more. You can add Island Perks Diner to the worthy list of breakfasts on the OBX.

How do we know for sure Island Perks is a diner? Because the word is plastered all over. Island Perks is located at the northern end of Buxton, just as Highway 12 curves westward. If you’re going too fast, you could easily miss it.

ATMOSPHERE: Island Perks may be missing the surly waitresses, the old-timey counter, and the sticky menus, but it mixes the comfort of a diner with the softness (sorry, that’s the only word I can think of) of a new coffee shop. So, it doesn’t go full diner.

The entryway drops you in front of the counter. Order here and they’ll bring your food out to you.

Help yourself to coffee (four different blends – nice!) or tea behind you. The coffee was above-average – a very pleasant surprise. Putting the “perks” in Island Perks.

You can sit indoors down one long room decorated with all sorts of oceany knick-knacks.

Or seat yourself on the just-as-oceany enclosed deck, although you may have to sit with the bathroom doors behind you. This type of weathered wooden siding embodies the look of the Outer Banks. Anyone who’s traveled here recognizes the rows of wood-sided houses and businesses stretching down Highway 12.

FOOD: Island Perks offers what you would expect from a diner: decent food, but no real stand-outs. What sets theirs slightly apart is that they’re not afraid of a little seasoning. We started out with a cinnamon roll. Nice and warm. Good layers to it.

Their menu is separated into four categories: The Basics (two eggs, et al.), Breakfast Wraps (all named using OBX terms like The Cape, the Ocracoker, etc), Egg Scrambles, and Breakfast Sandwiches. Pictured above is the Number One: two eggs, bacon, biscuit, and home fries. I added a pancake and some sausage gravy for the biscuit. Pretty much everything was that basic “I will chow down on this for breakfast” but forget about it a couple days later.

Another Number One, but with eggs over-easy. The home fries were good and browned.

One of our party ordered The Kinnakeeter, a breakfast wrap with eggs, bacon, sausage, and cheese.

Yet another combo plate. The one thing I really appreciate: they’re not afraid to freakin’ season their food! At the very least, I think diners should be willing to toss some salt and pepper on those eggs and potatoes. I’m constantly surprised at the bland potatoes that a served. It’s dangerous to over-do the salt, yes, but don’t just send me a plate as if to say, “Here, you deal with it.”

SERVICE: Very friendly. One of those places where they actually took interest in the fact that I was taking pictures and writing about their restaurant, so they made an extra effort to show us around. Overall, things moved quickly. It felt like we hadn’t been sitting long at our table before our food showed up.

OVERALL: Not my top pick for breakfast on the Outer Banks, but they give you something fairly close to the diner experience, with simple food that’s decently seasoned and covers all the basics. One of the cheaper breakfasts on the island, too! I should note that they’re also a full-service bakery; later in our vacation we ordered a cake from them – we actually got to speak directly with the baker about what we wanted – and that the cake was pretty good.


Island Perks Cafe on Urbanspoon

Diamond Shoals Restaurant | Buxton, NC

Diamond Shoals Restaurant (Facebook)
46843 Highway 12 (map it!)
Buxton, NC 27920
(252) 995-5217
Open 6:30-2:30, 5-9 (breakfast served 6:30-11 a.m.; buffet on Sat & Sun)
Accepts cash and credit cards

Date of Visit: Friday, June 24, 2009 at 8:30 a.m.

IMPRESSIONS: Diamond Shoals is a handy little stop along Highway 12, the stretch of road that traverses North Carolina’s Outer Banks. They serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner to hungry fishermen, beach combers, and vacationers, and feature a seafood market to boot.

You’ll notice the vague ocean-y decor out front: a small lighthouse-like cupola and thick ropes around the parking lot. Typical for a lot of restaurants on the Outer Banks. But check out the herbs in front! I hope they use these in the food.

ATMOSPHERE: Diamond Shoals is a mix of things: a restaurant (both casual and somewhat formal), a seafood store, and a gift shop. Because of our large group, we were seated in the dining room overflow, also known as the gift shop. We were surrounded by lots of ocean-themed chotchky (sp?). A bit disappointing, especially given the nice dining room, but the food and service made up for it.

The actual dining room is quite nice. They do the ocean theme tastefully: coral light sconces, beautiful carved wooden walls (see below), and gigantic fish tanks with eels.

FOOD: The food was a spot-on diner breakfast: a good mix of dishes and all the right portions.

I chose the Fisherman’s Favorite, a breakfast of 2 eggs, bacon, grits, and a biscuit. The eggs and bacon were good, the biscuits were great, and the grits needed some salt. But nothing to complain about. The coffee is good brown, too.

The Senora Omelet: essentially a western omelet with salsa and sour cream. Very good.

The Sausage Gravy Biscuit was a highlight: good chunky gravy, well seasoned but not too salty.

They’re not kidding when they say “jumbo” in the Diamond Shoals Jumbo Hotcake. Any meal in which you only need one of the featured items to fill the plate, is fine by me.

And the Corned Beef Hash. I never really like the look of this dish, but it wasn’t bad at all!

SERVICE: Service at Diamond Shoals was top notch – some of the best we found on the island, aside from being seated in the gift shop. But it’s the details that count: they were the first place to split checks. They were also the first to serve Heinz ketchup and not some no-name, off-brand, dyed-red tomato paste catsup concoction. The food came out fast, and our server – who was super sweet and had about twenty rings on each hand – kept our drinks refilled.

OVERALL: If you’re heading out for a busy day on Hatteras Island, or leaving early to visit neighboring Ocracoke, Diamond Shoals is your best bet for a breakfast kick-off. It’s located right in the middle of Buxton, close to the famous Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, plenty of shops and beaches. If you need something a little more substantial than just apple uglies, this is your stop!


Diamond Shoals Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Avon on Dwellable

Orange Blossom Bakery & Cafe | Buxton, NC

Orange Blossom Bakery & Cafe (Facebook)
47206 Highway 12 (map it!)
Buxton, NC 27920
(252) 995-4109
Open Mon-Sat 6:30-10 am; Sun 7-10 am
Accepts cash only

Date of Visit: Monday, June 15, 2009 at 7:15 a.m.

IMPRESSIONS: The Orange Blossom Bakery & Cafe is a decades-old institution on Hatteras Island, in the North Carolina Outer Banks. The Bakery & Cafe stays open seasonally, and is usually mobbed by the summer crowd every morning. The regular visitors know to hit up Orange Blossom early, in order to score some of their famous Apple Uglies. I’ve been to the Outer Banks several times with my wife’s family, and we pay the bakery a visit by bike or by car at least once or twice a year.

ATMOSPHERE: Like a typical morning at Orange Blossom, the bakery was busy busy busy! We arrived about 45 minutes after it opened, but still managed to beat a major crowd.

The bakery itself is tiny: one room with a few shelves packed full of goodies. Behind them the kitchen buzzes with five or six workers. Near the front door, a separate hallway leads to a small room with a handful of tables.

Orange Blossom offers a range of donuts, muffins, and pastries, plus breakfast and lunch sandwiches (scroll down their menu to read the description of The Buxton), but… everyone really comes to the bakery for their Apple Uglies. These babies come out of the kitchen on big, long, steaming hot trays.

An Apple Ugly is basically a fried apple fritter: dough mixed with apples, then fried and slathered with a sugar icing. When they’re warm, it’s a little bit of heaven. On the Orange Blossom website, they claim the pastries are called Uglies because they really are ugly pieces of dough. My father-in-law suggested, after we ordered a dozen to take back to the house, that they’re called Uglies because the line gets ugly after you order so many. Whatever the reason, the sheer taste and intensity of the sugar rush outweighs any concern of visual aesthetics.

Here’s one of our bags, filled with six Uglies, after we arrived home. Mmmm.

Artsy photo. I call this “Apple Ugly In The Morning, As The Atlantic Looks On.”


Orange Blossom Bakery Cafe on Urbanspoon

Avon on Dwellable

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 291 other followers